Posted by: TheAuthor | 12/11/2011

Day 51 – San Francisco

So here we are in the final days of the road trip, touring on foot around San Francisco back on the west coast of North America after leaving it a meer 50 days ago. Today my main focus was to sell our car Kevin so that we could enjoy our remaining days before flying south to Florida without concern.

With that in mind Shell and me drove to Oakland to a Pick N Pull in the attempt of selling him. Bearing in mind our CAD$800 car had driven us 43km short of 19,000km in 51 days without any big issues arising is remarkable, especially considering he is a 16 year-old escort with some rust issues – something not roadworthy back in England. Shell was particularly emotional now that we had reached the end of our journey and faced the prospect of leaving Kevin. As I went off to sort out the finer details of selling him, she spent some time capturing his finer side.

Unfortunately we required one more piece of paperwork to be able to sell him at the Pick N Pull so today we were out of luck. Worst of all today was friday, the weekend ahead meant the DMV was closed so we had to wait until monday to sort out everything as well as get ready to fly that evening. So as we were half a sight-seeing day down already, we left Kevin parked safely for the weekend (until I could return on monday to finish the job) and caught the train back into San Francisco downtown.

Back downtown Michelle and I explored the area around Market street and its immediate area. Whilst we wandered around the city, as tonight was our hostels Halloween pub crawl, we searched to find a suitable costume each for the evenings festivities. After a number of hours searching for something cost-effective we ended up settling on something simple in a shop with a 45 minute line to the check-out, looking to spend $40 each – money we didn’t really want to spend.

Fortunately we spoke to a friendly security guard who proposed a Goodwill thrift shop a little beyond our hostel, a short walk away. Eager to start drinking we raced off to find the shop and bought items to create our master pieces for the evening at a fraction of the price we were looking at originally. Once we returned to the hostel we found our fellow travellers Falk and Claire, sharing a drink we prepared ourselves.

Meeting our hostel staff near the front desk we set off towards our first stop, a bar a short distance away. Firstly, so the staff could withdraw money we walked for 15 minutes to an ATM and then waited for another 5 minutes for a bus. 20 minutes on the bus down the road we discovered we were heading for a remote bar because the staff wanted to see their friends within, fair enough I suppose as it was their Halloween as well.

Getting off the bus we discovered we had disembarked too early which now resulted in a further 10 minute walk down the street, already annoyed and now sober I began voicing my opinion loudly as we approached the hour mark from leaving the hostel – great pub crawl.

The bar we ended up in actually was pretty good and if you wanted to know, I could not fathom an answer as to what its name was. With a bar neighbouring next door, we had two options to fill our blood full of alcohol much to our delight.

Upon leaving the bars to head off to the fabled house-party we grouped outside the exit. No sooner had we stepped outside, Shell had her drink snatched forcefully from her hands with a look of disgust from the lady manning the door, wonderful management of the situation there. So, once again I went to voice my opinion.

Our esteemed guides booked a taxi for us to get to the house party, trusting them we stepped in for a 15 minute drive further from the hostel into the middle of nowhere.

We arrived, without our main guide but supplied with her clueless assistant instead. The taxi driver asked for $10 each, totally ridiculous and as we argued he dug his feet in and stated that was the deal our illustrious guide had agreed – ripping us off. Paying up the extortionate fare we exited and made our way into the house party above, straight into stares from the hosts and their guests. Sitting down we were soon asked to leave, due to no-one knowing who our guides were or any of us – we were not welcome.

Evicted and thoroughly dejected we hit the streets whereby I set about finding us a taxi ride directly to the hostel. Eventually I found one that would stop and started to ask him for a trip home, with him complaining over the distance and time of night/early morning. Tiring of the situation and Shell becoming tired (Falk and Claire having never arrived along with our guide) we stepped in the car and drove home.

Our final taxi ride ended up costing $25 between five of us, far cheaper than earlier. Needless to say we were all tired, sober and upset with the poor nature of the tour. Happy Halloween!


Trip Statistics:

Tim Horton’s Stops – 16

Alternate Coffee Stops – 8

States Driven Through – California

Kilometres driven – 30km

Total Canadian Kilometres driven – 11,499km

Total distance driven – 18,957km

Car faults – Found out Speedometer is inaccurate by 10kph

– Speakers starting to refuse to operate

– Tail Light Casing Broken

– Console Handbrake light always ‘on’



  1. Awesome! terrific one. 🙂 Keep it up!

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